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BSD Mailbag 1.9.15

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Bill here. I'm gonna answer some questions now, if that's ok.

Evan Agostini/Getty Images

So now that franklin has clearly worn out his welcome by missing on a couple of 4* guys, who's your preferred replacement? -- NuclearLion

Well, if Penn State were to move on from Franklin, it would need to get a guy who knows how to recruit/develop lesser talent, preferably one with Penn State ties. There is but one answer to this question:

Greg Schiano

Since we missed out on Christian Wilkins, how long until this recruiting class slips to last in the B1G and the bottom third nationally? -- icavalera

Never, because we aren't Rutgers.

With the recent news of players leaving early and PSU being well below 85 players, even if the recruiting class hits 25, can/will/should they petition the B1G to allow over signing a player or two? -- Chester Studmuffin

I don't *think* Penn State will do this. However, there is really no downside to the team doing it outside of it gives morons like Christine Brennan the chance to write thousands of words about culture. If the NCAA/Big Ten says no, whatever. If they says yes, WE OUTCHEA.

There's an advertisement for Taken 3 when should this guys family just give up on travel and stay in a safe room for the rest of their lives? -- Sperbro

Well this movie doesn't seem like it involves any traveling, just people who want revenge on Liam Neeson for killin' folks when he tried to save his daughter. Having said that, if I were his wife/daughter in the second movie, and he said "let's go on vacation" to anywhere other than, like, Portland, there is absolutely no chance I'd be down to go. Seriously, you live in California and a bunch of Albanian mobsters have a lust for your/your wife's/your daughter's blood. You don't have to go anywhere.

If you had sufficient time to research and prepare and were given a modest budget, could you pull off a major (>$3M) heist? I’d like to think I could. -- vern05

I think this is one of those things where I'd say "yeah, totally!" but the nanosecond I get within 10,000 yards of the bank I am heisting, I would chicken out. I mean, yeah, $3 million, but realistically, how far can you go after you get out and you're transporting that kind of cash? With how technology has evolved, I'm inclined to think that the NSA would know exactly where you are within, like, 77 seconds of the time you leave the premises.

I dunno. I suggest having Matt de Bear try this so we can see what happens. Hopefully he gets arrested and sent to Guantanamo.

I've mentioned on here a few times that, like others, I'm not a fan of ESPN anymore. Having said that, Stuart Scott was always my favorite anchor on any network, sports related or not. So, what’s your favorite SS tagline/catch phrase? -- trizani83

I'm big on his two classic ones: "boo-yah!" and "cool as the other side of the pillow."

Also, a quick word on Stuart Scott. I kinda want to do this sports writering thing for the rest of my sad and pathetic life, but for a while, I really wanted to do the TV thing. One of the big reasons why was Stuart Scott. For an impressionable child, seeing someone talk with the confidence and coolness that Stu Scott had was so, so awesome. I miss him, and while I hope that there will be another Stuart Scott someday, I know for a fact that there will never be one.

Because I won a bet, I get to (have to?) pick a place to go for a quick 3 day-ish vacation. Where should I go? -- WorldBFat

Well, you said a quick three day-ish vacation and you said you live in the greater-D.C. area. I think that means you stay east of the Mississippi (so you don't need to worry about spending too much time flying/driving somewhere) in a place that is relatively affordable. For that reason, I think three days in Nashville would be awesome.

I've literally never heard a bad thing about the city, especially its music scene. There are sporting events you can go to and most importantly, there are apparently some awesome BBQ places. It's also a 90-ish minute flight for you and god dammit I really want to go to Nashville.

With Smith, Barnes, and James gone, how does this affect, if at all, your expectations for 2015? -- PSUHist14

Well, I don't think Jesse James is a huge loss, in all honesty. I think Mike Gesicki is going to be a monster as a receiver, Adam Breneman is a massive upgrade as a blocker/is still a really solid receiver and Kyle Carter can be really good when he's healthy. Sure, losing James hurts, but it isn't a program-changing loss.

Donovan Smith seems like a huge loss on the surface, but he's regressed mightily since his stellar freshman year. I think Andrew Nelson has the potential to be a star with some more seasoning, Paris Palmer will be serviceable and maaaaaaaaybe Brendan Mahon will do better if he slides to tackle. Also, and this is a bit unrelated, I really want Ruben Carter from Florida State. OBLIGE ME, COUCH FRANKLIN.

I think the biggest loss is Deion Barnes. He was a monster last season, and the drop off from him to his likely replacement is huge, mostly because we have no idea who will replace him, assuming Garrett Sickels replaces C.J. Olaniyan (which for the sake of this hypothetical is happening). Is it Carl Nassib, who is a nice rotation guy but hasn't shown that he can be a three-down lineman yet? Is Brad Bars staying, and if he is, can he play on first, second and third downs consistently? Is it a freshman? Keep an eye on DE next year. It's a sneaky big position of need.

As for my expectations, I want eight or nine wins, and I think the squad can get that. More on that in a few months.

Is it OK to root for Ohio State to win the National Championship? -- Aqua Velva Man


For real, if this was literally anyone other than Ohio State (with a few exceptions), this would be the most likable team in the country. A head coach on the road to redemption after being forced to retire while he was on top of the world due to health issues? A third-string quarterback who never took a snap before a few weeks ago leading a team to the title game? A third-stringer at QB who never took a snap before December and only stepped in because the backup -- who had a Heisman-caliber season and never took a snap before this year -- got hurt before the conference title game? Oh, and the backup only played because the Heisman candidate starting under center got hurt during the offseason. THEY BEAT ALABAMA.

*slaps self*

Go Ducks.

Worst resolution ever? -- Dbridi

Someone, somewhere probably once said "I'm going to try new things this year!" and fell to death whilst skydiving. That.

Which way to prepare asparagus is best, and why? -- Polak

So the classic "drizzle some olive oil, season with salt and pepper, throw it on the grill" is wonderful. My favorite, which is a wonderful dish to cook when you're trying to impress a significant other:

1) Cook up some bacon, take it out, leave the leftover fat.

2) In the pan that you cooked the bacon in -- which still has the fat in it -- cook chopped asparagus to your preferred doneness.

3) While doing this, make some linguini.

4) When the asparagus is done, you can toss it in some balsamic (NOTE: this step is optional, and you probably shouldn't do this because you want the flavor of the bacon to come through, but balsamic is awesome).

5) When the pasta's done, add some butter and balsamic and have it coat the linguine. Next, crumble up the bacon, toss it in with the pasta. Then, add the asparagus.

6) Go crazy with the black pepper and parmesan.

7) Glass of white wine.

8) Prince.

When you make this for your girlfriend, Nick, make sure she knows where you got the recipe from.

Top ten favorite holiday songs not done by Kanye and/or Paul McCartney? -- Smee

This, 10 times:

Outside of the new collaboration with Kanye, what is your favorite Paul McCartney song? -- Male Fearless Leader

"You Can't Always Get What You Want" or "Won't Get Fooled Again."

Power rank the following Wings: Buffalo Wild, the TV show, Over, Detroit Red, the Workflow Instance Generation and Selection model, spicy garlic. -- Male Fearless Leader

Last) That Macklemore song

6) Workflow thing

5) Wings (the TV show)

4) Buffalo Wild Wings

3) Detroit Red Wings

2) Spicy Garlic Wings

1) Wings Over

When in doubt, pick chicken. This is my general rule when I go out to dinner and also when I'm answering questions about types of wings. The exception is Buffalo Wild Wings, which is an ok place to get a meal and incredibly overpriced.

I recall Franklin talking early in his hire about kids leaving early for the NFL. Basically he wants top talent to get degree in three years (maybe four with a redshirt), play for three years, and then leave early for the NFL. Is this why Barnes, Smith, James are leaving early? How do 17yr old kids respond to this (I.e. How does it impact recruiting?) -- PSUinOH

If I were a 17 year old with aspirations of playing pro football, and a coach sat me down and said "listen, I can get you to the NFL in three years," that's reaaaaaaaaally appealing. It's especially appealing if I can also get my degree in three years. I don't know if this is why the guys left early, but I'm inclined to think that recruits would be intrigued at the thought of getting to the NFL sooner rather than later (because let's face it, while we all love college football, the end game for most kids is to get to the NFL if they are talented enough).

What TV announcer would you like to see casually curse during a live broadcast? What would the situation be, and what epithet would he/she use? -- bveo12

This is the easiest question I have been posed, and there is one answer: Lou Holtz, during an appearance on Fox News. Yes, hearing him say to Mark May "now lishin here lemme tell ya you're fulla shhhit" would be amazing on a number of levels, but tell me, what would be funnier than Holtz showing up on Hannity and saying "thish fuckin' Obama'sh ruining the country!"?

Nothing, that's what.